Tag Archives: Diplomacy

Egypt’s continental diplomacy rewarded by African Union presidency


It was not long ago when the African Union, the continent’s primary political grouping, suspended Egypt’s membership to punish it for what it described at the time as a “coup” against a freely elected government.

That August 2013 decision by the AU was reversed the following year, just weeks after the landslide election of Abdel Fattah El Sisi, who as defence minister led the military’s ouster of Mohammed Morsi, just a year into the Islamist president’s rule.

Egypt’s reintegration into Africa, where it occupies the north-eastern tip facing Europe, began with that June 2014 decision by the AU, with Mr El Sisi spearheading an energetic drive of diplomacy that included visits to some two dozen countries across the vast…

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The PRC Bets on Climate Diplomacy in the Caribbean


Climate change has become a central battleground in the PRC’s bid to brand itself as a leading partner and spokesman for the developing world. Beijing has earmarked billions to fund initiatives aimed at reducing carbon, supporting green energy, and promoting climate change resilience across the globe in places like Sri Lanka, Ghana, and Egypt. The investments add substance to Xi Jinping’s pledge at the 19th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress in 2018 that China was “taking a driving seat in international cooperation to respond to climate change” and become “an important participant, contributor, and torchbearer in the global endeavor for an ecological civilization” (Xinhua, November 11 2017).

The PRC’s push for green diplomacy has spread along its Maritime Silk Road to its…

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As US ‘Debt-Trap Diplomacy’ Rhetoric Heats Up, China-Africa Relations Hold Fast


When U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton rolled out the United States’ new Africa strategy last week, he used the occasion to identify China as an imminent threat to both American and African interests.

At different points in prepared remarks delivered at the Heritage Foundation, Bolton characterized China’s presence in Africa as predatory, opportunistic and power-hungry.

He focused on Chinese involvement in Djibouti, where Beijing has built its first overseas military base, and Zambia, where rumors have swirled since September that unsustainable debt will force the mineral-rich country to hand its state-owned power company, ZESCO, over to China.

Both Zambian and Chinese officials have denied a takeover, yet Bolton was adamant that African nations will pay dearly for Beijing’s…

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Guyana to expand global diplomacy


Foreign Minister Carl Greenidge (R) and Retno Marsudi, Indonesia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, hold talks in Georgetown

By Ray Chickrie
Caribbean News Now contributor

GEORGETOWN, Guyana — As Guyana continues to draw global attention as a result of massive oil and gas discovery, the country is set to see production start in 2020 and “as small countries, we need as many friends abroad as possible to survive,” the foreign minister of Guyana, Carl Greenidge, told the media last week in Georgetown.

This move is to protect Guyana’s sovereignty amidst Venezuela’s renewed claim to two-thirds of the country’s territory. By forging strong alliances through multilateral forums and bilateral ties, Guyana is hoping to raise its global diplomatic profile and, to this end,…

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WEKESA: Let’s promote Kiswahili as the language of African diplomacy


By BOB WEKESA
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A seemingly innocuous development, yet one loaded with diplomatic potential for Africa happened last week — the announcement that Kiswahili will be taught in primary schools in South Africa.

It is probably one of the most important developments in the trajectory of the language since it joined English, Portuguese, French and Arabic as the official language of the African Union in 2004.

Interestingly, the adoption of the predominantly Bantu language at the AU was in part thanks to former Mozambican president Joaquim Chissano’s surprise delivery of a farewell speech as AU chairman in Swahili in 2004.

Indeed, the announcement by South African basic education minister Angie Motshekga, quickly garnered vibrant discussion on social media platforms in South Africa,…

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The anxious chorus around Chinese “debt-trap diplomacy” doesn’t reflect African realities — Quartz


At this month’s 2018 Summit of the Forum on China Africa Cooperation, the cornerstone of China’s investment and lending on the continent, Beijing made a pledge of $60 billion in investment, just like the previous edition.

It appears, however, that we are in a new phase of Chinese financing. A combination of domestic and international pressures is altering China’s extensive lending program—and African states that have relied on this lifeline must adjust. The new reality could benefit African countries by compelling improved project preparation and implementation, reducing price inflation, and decreasing the role of political over economic considerations in project selection.

At the last summit, in 2015, China also announced a $60 billion package for Africa comprised of $35 billion in…

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